The core gameplay loop of Slay the Spire involves:
The goal is to climb to the top of the spire and defeat the final boss. Each full run takes around 1-2 hours. The turn-based combat works like this:
There are 3 playable character classes in Slay the Spire:
Each class has a unique starting deck and card pool to choose upgrades from. This allows you to build dramatically different styles of decks each run.
Deckbuilding is a critical part of success in Slay the Spire. After each battle, you get to choose 1 of 3 cards to add to your deck. Some key deckbuilding strategies include:
You also get opportunities to remove cards from your deck, making it more concentrated and powerful.
In addition to card rewards, you can find powerful relics and single-use potions during your run. Relics provide permanent, passive bonuses or effects. Some examples include:
Potions give temporary benefits like healing, strength boosts, or card draw. Using potions effectively is key to surviving difficult encounters.
You will battle a variety of monsters, elites, and bosses on your climb up the spire:
|Monsters||Common enemies faced in most fights||Slimes, Spheric Guardians|
|Elites||Tougher enemies that drop relics||Gremlin Nob, Book of Stabbing|
|Bosses||Major encounters at the end of each floor||Hexaghost, The Collector|
Each enemy has unique attack patterns and intents you need to strategize against. Learning enemy behavior is critical as you climb ascension difficulty levels. Here is an example of the Hexaghost boss: Hexaghost
A key feature of Slay the Spire is how it encourages replayability through procedural generation and unlocks:
With so much variety in each run, and new things to unlock, Slay the Spire offers tremendous replay value. Even after 100+ hours, the game still feels fresh and exciting to play.
Slay the Spire succeeds by blending roguelike and deckbuilding genres into a highly addictive experience. With 3 unique classes, hundreds of cards and relic combinations, and procedural generation, no two runs ever feel the same. The turn-based combat is easy to learn but has depth in terms of strategy and decision making. Frequent updates, Ascension mode, and unlocks give incentive to put dozens or hundreds of hours into mastering the game. For fans of card games, roguelikes, and highly replayable indies, Slay the Spire is easy to recommend.
Final Score: 9/10 Slay the Spire executes its core gameplay loop of “roguelike deckbuilder” incredibly well. With three diverse classes, deep strategic combat, and almost endless replayability, it’s easy to recommend to card game and roguelike fans looking for their next addiction. Minor complaints around repetition and balance do little to detract from the overall quality and fun. Slay the Spire deserves its popularity and acclaim as one of the best indie games of recent years.